2010 was a great year for the PC. We were treated to some truly splendid titles and now that 2011 is finally here, I can give some thought to what I think was the year’s best. It goes without saying that this post will be a little redundant for those of you that have been looking at various other gaming sites or blogs, everyone seems to have picked their Game of the year almost a good month ago but I’m putting my two cents out there anyway. Besides, I’ve had a few emails requesting to do this. So without further ado, here are the nominees for (my) Game of the Year 2010.
Battlefield Bad Company 2
For what was essentially a console port, Bad Company 2 did impress me tremendously. The single player campaign tried hard to match Infinity Ward’s magic with the Modern Warfare series but never quite gets there. The multiplayer aspect however, was a revelation.
Mass Effect 2
Bioware has always been at the helm of crafting high quality RPGs and ME2 is its finest moment yet. An original IP that impressed me when it first came out for the PC in 2008 it was undoubtedly an excellent RPG. The sequel pretty much blew me away. This one was a no brainer.
Another “2” at the end of a title. Anyone else seeing a trend emerge here? If there is one thing any developer can learn from Blizzard, it’s how to polish a game. Right form the word go, StarCraft 2 screams “polish”. Hardcore fans were always going to judge the game by its multiplayer but the single player was surprisingly refreshing for a game that still sticks to mechanics that are over a decade old. Blizzard, you have done it again.
Call of Duty: Black Ops
Yes, Activision pretty much gave PC gamers the finger with Modern Warfare 2 but he way I see it, it only set the groundwork for Treyarch to fill the void. An astonishingly compelling single player campaign with a story that actually made sense this time, Black Ops makes it as a nominee primarily due to its multiplayer aspect, which is quite simply; the best the series has to offer.
Fallout: New Vegas
Obsidian’s treatment of the Fallout universe makes for a more reverent experience that’s stays true (or rather “truer”) to the original isometric games of the 90s. The wastelands are still as dangerous as ever and New Vegas is bursting with adventure. A rock solid RPG that plays to the developers strengths and is all the richer for it.
And the winner is (cue drum roll):
Mass Effect 2
Mass Effect 2 is quite frankly, Bioware’s magnum opus. An action RPG with an epic story, fantastic characters and spectacular atmosphere, it is full of moments that made me get out of my seat in excitement. The music is phenomenal and complements the game perfectly. The writing and presentation is better than that of most movies I’ve seen this year. Coming up with a new IP is always tricky, but with the Mass Effect universe, Bioware have conjured something truly special. Where games like Black Ops try to make things cinematic by taking control away from the player, ME2 does it by a combination of everything, ie, backdrop, characters, music, occasional set pieces etc. It also has one of the best endings in any game EVER. If you managed to bring your whole team back from the suicide mission, I dare you not to feel a feel a sense of pride during the last cut scene. Take a bow Bioware. And hurry up with Mass Effect 3 please.